The curious case of what happened that night with Ryan Lotche has been the talk around the world ever since Rio authorities have proven that he lied. Now one of the swimmers, Gunnar Bentz is giving his account about what happened that night.
On Friday, Bentz released a statement through the University of Georgia apologizing to the United States Swim team and the Olympic committee for his role in that incident that took place a week again. He stated that he “never made a false statement to anyone” when questioned by authorities. He also gave his accounts of what happened that night, which is a very different story from Lochte’s.
“After attending an event with several swimmers from different nations, I left in a taxicab along with U.S. swimmers Jack Conger, Jimmy Feigen and Ryan Lochte around 6 a.m.,” On the way back to the Olympic Village, we pulled into a convenience store to use the restroom.”
This is when the story gets a little tricky. “There was no restroom inside, so we foolishly relieved ourselves on the backside of the building behind some bushes,” Bentz says.This part of the story is the exact opposite of what Lotche and the USOC are claiming happened.
Bentz claims that Lochte “pulled to the ground a framed metal advertisement that was loosely anchored to the brick wall,” which led to him to suggest that the group leave. When they returned to the taxi, they were confronted by two security guards, this has been confirmed by the video footage obtained by Brazilian police.
“Two men, whom I believe to have been security guards, then instructed us to exit the vehicle. No guns were drawn during this exchange, but we did see a gun tucked into one of the guard’s waistband. As Jimmy and Jack were walking away from the vehicle, the first security guard held up a badge to me and drew his handgun. I yelled to them to come back toward us and they complied. Then the second guard drew his weapon and both guards pointed their guns at us and yelled at us to sit on a nearby sidewalk.”
Bentz claims that Lotchte started yelling at guards after being told to sit on the sidewalk. He claims that Lochte and the guards got into a heated exchange verbally, but had no physical contact. Then reportedly a customer came and tried to serve as a translator.
“Through the interpreter, one of the guards said that we needed to pay them in order to leave,” Bentz said. “I gave them what I had in my wallet, which was a $20 bill, and Jimmy gave them 100 Reals, which is about $50 in total.”
Once the four men were allowed to leave the gas station, Gunnar says they walked a block down the street and got another taxi and went back to the Village.